By Giacomo Puccini
Production by Franco Zeffirelli
At Lyric Opera
Tosca is a beloved opera filled with romance and heart
I have never before seen Ginacomo Piccini and Giacosa & Illica’s 1900 opera-Tosca-that quickly became a hit and it continues today to be one of the most popular operas. The Lyric Opera of Chicago now has several new cast members including Violeta Urmana singing Floria Tosca, Marco Berti as Mario Cavaradossi, Lucio Gallo as Baron Scarpia and David Cangelosi as Spoletta; Stephen Lord now conducts. Each of these gave spirited performances with their grand voices and deep understanding of their roles.
Tosca is so romantic, so melodic and so emotional that I was completely enchanted from the early romantic duet arias. I was impressed by the rich vocals from Violeta Urmana and the smooth fluid tenor chops from Marco Berti as Tosca’s lover, Mario Cavaradossi. Lucio Gallao is the deliciously cunning villain, Baron Scarpia.
The Lyric Opera’s production is based on the 1964 Covent Gardens, London opera. Filled with excellent sets (designed by Renzo Mangiardino), a large chorus and dressed in colorful period-perfect costumes, Tosca is a marvelous operatic repertoire that contains a lush score and movingly romantic arias. Tosca is a fine opera to expose young people to the magic of grand opera.
At the Lyric Opera Chicago, 20 N. Wacker Drive, Chicago, IL, 312.332.2244 ext. 5600, tickets $33 – $207, Friday January 15, 2010 7:30 PM, Tuesday January 19, 2010 7:30 PM, Friday January 22, 2010 2:00 PM, Monday January 25, 2010 7:30 PM, Friday January 29, 2010, running time is 2 hours, 50 minutes in Italian with English subtitles.